NCEL: Armthorpe and Rossington suffer narrow opening day defeats
Armthorpe Welfare and Rossington Main both suffered 1-0 home defeats on the opening day of the season.
Former Rossington striker Jonathan Fusco proved to be Welfare’s undoing with a debut goal for Parkgate.
Ben Hunter’s first game in charge of Main ended in defeat to newly-promoted Retford FC.
Armthorpe could count themselves unlucky not to come away with a share of the spoils after enjoying plenty of possession and carving out several decent goal scoring opportunities.
Manager Mike Carmody handed debuts to left back James Arnold, defender Reece Lucas, Ryan Poskitt in midfield and striker Adam Lee.
Arnold almost made a perfect start to his Welfare career when he volleyed just over the crossbar from a Poskitt corner.
Parkgate went close themselves on 21 minutes when Matt Crookes headed narrowly wide from a corner.
Craig Aspinall and Liam Radford went close for the hosts before Fusco scored with a fine angled strike from the edge of the area midway through the first half.
Steve Garner almost equalised immediately with a header, while at the other end Josh Dodd’s goalline clearance prevented Parkgate doubling their lead.
Armthorpe continued to take the game to Parkgate after the break with Lee shooting narrowly wide and Garner seeing his powerful effort saved.
Poskitt and Garner both had shots well saved by the busy Chris Butt as Parkgate defended stoutly to claim the three points.
Rossington made a lively start against Retford and there was less than a minute on the clock when Ben Clarke fired agonisingly wide from the edge of the area.
However, totally against the run of play, Retford grabbed the lead on nine minutes for what would prove to be the winning goal when Shay Evans-Booth found the net from close range after a mix-up in the home defence.
The goal signalled a spell of sustained pressure from Main without creating any clear cut opportunities.
After the break Eliot Wilson saw his shot deflected wide and Bailey Conway fired wide from distance but it proved to be a frustrating afternoon for Hunter’s side.